Speaker:Dame Marilyn Strathern DBE FBA
ISAIAH BERLIN LECTUREMore about the Isaiah Berlin Lectures
This lecture was published in Proceedings of the British Academy, 139
(This lecture was repeated on 1 March 2006 at the University of Manchester.)
This lecture series was endowed through a bequest from Sir Isaiah Berlin FBA. The lecture is intended to appraise the contemporary condition of any one of the fields of learning with which the Academy is concerned. The lecture was first delivered in 2001.
Isaiah Berlin Lecture, delivered by Lord Sutherland of Houndwood FBA, on 19 October 2004. There was a time when the metaphor appropriate to the individual in search of moral and spiritual fulfilment was 'pilgrim'. The goal or telos of human life was known and identifiable; the problem was how to get there. From Plato's attempt to show us the way out of the Cave to Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, the problems of the journey were recognised, but the point of arrival was not, in these accounts, in dispute. This implied unity of vision has unravelled through the vagaries of post-Enlightenment life. The problem today is not simply 'how to get there', but rather where 'there' is. The metaphor of 'pilgrim' has lost its force and I wish to examine the effectiveness of two alternatives 'tourist' and 'pilgrim'.